This book offers an overview of key elements of the hospital -- its structure, administration, and its functioning. Students and new clinicians may be so focused on mastering specific clinical skills that they have little time to observe or question the whole process of care. This book looks beyond acute disease to the environment of care, how it works, how it doesn't work, and how it might improve. Issues discussed include understanding and communicating with families, the basics of hospital finance, how dangerous hospitalization can be to the elderly, and how to minimize errors. Medical students and residents, advanced practice nurses, and physician's assistants, are among the many potential readers for this book.